Conspiracy Theories in Late Medieval Period and in Early Modern Europe: A Comparative Study of Sabbath and Blood Libel

Postgraduate Thesis uoadl:2883480 146 Read counter

Κατεύθυνση Ευρωπαϊκή ιστορία
Library of the School of Philosophy
Deposit date:
Amplianiti Evdokia
Supervisors info:
Γαγανάκης Κωνσταντίνος, Αναπληρωτής Καθηγητής, Ιστορίας, ΕΚΠΑ
Γιαντσή - Μελετιάδη Νικολέτα, Αναπληρώτρια καθηγήτρια, Ιστορίας, ΕΚΠΑ
Παπαθανασίου Μαρία, Αναπληρώτρια Καθηγήτρια, Ιστορίας, ΕΚΠΑ
Original Title:
Θεωρίες Συνωμοσίας κατά τον Ύστερο Μεσαίωνα και την Πρώιμη Νεώτερη Περίοδο: Μία συγκριτική θεώρηση του Sabbath και του Λιβέλου του αίματος.
Translated title:
Conspiracy Theories in Late Medieval Period and in Early Modern Europe: A Comparative Study of Sabbath and Blood Libel
In this paper I shall examine the existence or not of conspiracy theories in Late Medieval Period and in Early Modern Europe. My basic methodological tools in order to explore how conspiracy theories work and how people get attracted by them come from the field of psychology. Having conspiracy theories as my starting point, I aim to explain two specific concepts, two stories; the story about blood libel and the story about Sabbath. The most important questions that dominate throughout my text are relevant to the components that composed each one of these two narratives. Also, I tend to present how similar or different these narratives are, which are the consequences of these stories and to what extend this exploration offers something new, in the understanding of this period. I focus on the cultural components that compose the stories, because, as far as I am concerned, they play a crucial part firstly, in the making of a story and secondly in the pervasion of the story to a wide range of social groups. The components, that are dominant in people’s fantasy for centuries, come to play a vital role in the formation of these stories, for instance, in Judaic blood libel someone can find folk beliefs about blood that count centuries of life. Respectively, in Sabbath we face the same complex background. Ancient or even older beliefs and rituals for fertility or not, become the fertile ground that the flower of the narrative of Sabbath will blossom, in that specific moment in history, always “thanks” to the existence of our demonologists(that I also refer extensively in my thesis). Women and Jews due to these narratives, consist of the face of the enemy. They get persecuted and doomed to a fate that they couldn’t choose. All of these, because that rich folkloric background was present, and capable to diffuse these reformed beliefs to every social group. Finally, I examine if these stories consisted of a conspiracy theory or not, by comparing these two narratives and composing a view in total.
Main subject category:
blood libel, sabbath, demonology, conspiracy theory
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